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March 16, 2023

March 16, 2023

Types of Family Therapy Models: A Quick Comparison

by Rudy Ramirez

by Rudy Ramirez

3 min read

what are the types of family therapy
what are the types of family therapy
what are the types of family therapy

• Family therapy models vary greatly, making it essential to choose one that aligns with your family's dynamics.

• Techniques such as narrative therapy and systemic therapy help families understand and resolve their issues.

• Engaging in the right type of family therapy can enhance communication and problem-solving within the family.

Schedule a consultation with a family therapist today

Each type of family therapy models deliver therapy treatment very differently from one another. Finding a family therapist that understands the dynamic of your family and how to approach your sessions plays a big role in the success and enjoyment of your sessions.

When you first consult with a family therapist, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the different types of family therapy models. You may want to suggest some approaches you think will benefit your family the most. Otherwise, it’s good to understand the approach the therapist recommends or takes so you also understand the other options and how to make a family therapy models comparison.

Here are a few of the most common family therapy interventions that are frequently used in treatment sessions:

  • Narrative therapy

  • Systemic therapy

  • Structural therapy

  • Solution-focused therapy

  • Intergenerational therapy

  • Marriage counseling/couples therapy

  • Communication theory

  • Cognitive Behavioral therapy


family therapy models comparison
Family Therapy in Los Angeles

Narrative Therapy

The approach assumes that all members are storytellers, each with their unique narrative about how the family relationship has shaped their current situation. People give meaning to their stories from personal experiences, family history, and societal influences. The therapist's role is to help family members see the different stories and how they shape family relationships.

Through narrative counseling, one can detach themselves from the problem and view it objectively instead of through a subjective lens. This enables people to trust in their skillset and better understand how to approach the problem. Through this process, family members gain greater insight into family dynamics and develop healthier family relationships.

Systemic Therapy

Systemic family therapy explores the complexities of familial issues in multiple contexts, including romantic relationships, parental roles, and interactions with extended family. This approach also takes into account a range of cultural influences, such as political views and socioeconomic status, that can shape psychological development and emotional health. By understanding the interplay between these various factors, systemic family therapy seeks to promote healing on an individual level within a larger social context. Systemic therapy can be broken down into five distinct sections:

  • deconstruction of the issue

  • identifying recurring patterns and feedback mechanisms

  • evaluating beliefs and explanations

  • understanding emotions and attachments

  • assessing contextual circumstances


structural family therapy techniques

Structural Therapy

Structural family therapy aims to comprehend how family members interact with one another, including spouses, parents, children, and other individuals. This approach involves analyzing the intricate "matrix of identity" within the family unit, including its hierarchical structure, sub-relationships, and boundaries. It assumes that family issues arise due to family dynamics and how each family member is placed in the family structure.

The therapist identifies family patterns and roles at the root of family problems. Through direct interventions, family members can be empowered to recognize family patterns and actively work towards a family-wide solution.

Solution-Focused Therapy

This approach focuses on family strengths and solutions rather than focusing on family problems. The family therapist helps family members identify solutions to problems and set goals to work towards those solutions. This approach encourages family members to build on their strengths rather than focusing on family members' weaknesses.

types of family therapy

Marriage/Couples Therapy

This type involves spouses or romantic partners engaging in family therapy. Marriage counseling can be a helpful approach to address various issues that couples may face, such as communication breakdowns, infidelity, mental health concerns, emotional distancing, cultural differences, challenges with sexual intimacy, financial stress, and lack of trust. When couples acknowledge these issues and decide to seek counseling, family therapists can help them develop healthier communication patterns, improve their listening skills, and resolve conflict more constructively.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive behavioral family therapy is based on the idea that family members' beliefs, thoughts, and behaviors are interrelated and can be modified. This type of family therapy helps family members identify how their thoughts, emotions, and behaviors are connected to help family members become more mindful of how they interact with one another. This family therapy can help family members develop healthier communication skills, better problem-solving strategies, and more effective coping mechanisms.


types of family counseling and interventions

Communication Theory

Communication is an essential cornerstone in the contemporary family unit. This should come as no surprise since solving conflicts often requires healthy and honest dialogue. Family therapy seeks to build on these conversation skills by equipping families with new strategies and perspectives that can help them navigate even the most challenging of situations. With this approach, communication becomes a key source for resolving issues within any given family dynamic.

Choosing the Family Therapy Modality That Suits you Best

While you may instantly gravitate to one family therapy model over others, it’s best to keep an open mind. Talk to your family therapist further to get more insight into what they believe is most effective for your family unit.

There’s no right or wrong way, but it can make a big difference in your experience as well as the experience of the members who are participating in your therapy sessions.

Feel free to contact us anytime with questions about what we do and how we can help.

April 24, 2024

April 24, 2024

by Tina Marie Del Rosario

by Tina Marie Del Rosario

Emoji stickers of California and a person on virtual therapy online appointment
Emoji stickers of California and a person on virtual therapy online appointment
Emoji stickers of California and a person on virtual therapy online appointment

• Consider emotions, life events, relationships

• Weigh feelings, experiences, attachments

• Assess temperament, circumstances, social ties

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April 11, 2024

April 11, 2024

Corporate Wellness Workshops: Boosting Employee Health and Productivity in 2024
Corporate Wellness Workshops: Boosting Employee Health and Productivity in 2024
Corporate Wellness Workshops: Boosting Employee Health and Productivity in 2024

• The workshops provide tools for better stress management, lifestyle balance, and proactive health care.

• Integration into company culture is crucial, highlighting the importance of employee participation and feedback.

• The outcome includes a healthier workforce, reduced job turnover, and a more supportive workplace environment.

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• In the wake of a tragedy, leaders must communicate effectively, balancing professionalism with empathy.

• Providing access to mental health resources and flexible working options can support employees in their recovery.

• Continuous open communication, respecting confidentiality, helps build trust and supports the emotional health of the workforce.

READ MORE

• Mothers and daughters can improve their relationship by engaging in shared activities and making time for each other.

• Developing a best friend mentality with trust and open communication can deepen the bond.

• Handling conflicts wisely and fostering forgiveness are crucial for a resilient connection.

READ MORE

• Pressures from everyday interactions may cause unhelpful behaviors and conflicts within families.

• Through family therapy, members can learn to express themselves better and listen more effectively.

• Engaging in activities such as open communication sessions and art therapy allows for emotional expression and bonding.

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March 3, 2023

March 3, 2023

by Tina Marie Del Rosario

by Tina Marie Del Rosario

sings of untrustworthy partners both boyfriend and girlfriend
sings of untrustworthy partners both boyfriend and girlfriend
sings of untrustworthy partners both boyfriend and girlfriend

• In any close relationship, trust is crucial and must be actively developed and tested over time.

• Signs of a lack of trust include a partner's failure to admit errors, inconsistency in keeping promises, and a closed-off demeanor.

• Relationships thrive on safety and security, which are fostered by honest communication and mutual respect.

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• Schedule an appointment individually or with your partner.

• Expect introductory questions about your relationship history.

• Be ready to discuss what you both hope to achieve through therapy.

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October 27, 2022

October 27, 2022

how to communicate better in a relationship
how to communicate better in a relationship
how to communicate better in a relationship

• Relationship communication quotes highlight the power of conversation in building genuine connections.

• Humor, trust, and common goals are essential elements in maintaining a successful relationship.

• Effective communication involves understanding nonverbal cues and avoiding one-sided conversations.

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• Engaging in therapy is an essential step for personal growth, yet many struggle with opening up about sensitive topics.

• Over 80% of people report some level of dishonesty in sessions, affecting the positive outcomes of therapy.

• People benefit from writing their thoughts, choosing a relaxing time to meet, and gradually discussing deeper issues.

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September 27, 2022

September 27, 2022

Emoji representation holding envelope speak to therapist
Emoji representation holding envelope speak to therapist
Emoji representation holding envelope speak to therapist

• Essential elements of the first email to a therapist, such as self-introduction and stating the reason for reaching out.

• Advice on researching therapy types before contacting a therapist to ensure a suitable match.

• Procedures on how to ask about therapist's availability, fees, and possible referrals.

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• Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) helps couples rebuild trust and secure attachment after infidelity.

• EFT techniques include identifying emotional response patterns, embracing discomfort, and stopping past projections.

• If EFT is unsuccessful, it may be healthier to consider letting go of the relationship.

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July 26, 2022

July 26, 2022

two people learning How To Validate Someone's Feelings
two people learning How To Validate Someone's Feelings
two people learning How To Validate Someone's Feelings

• Emotional invalidation, such as telling someone they are overreacting, can undermine self-confidence and relationship security.

• Validating emotions with empathy builds relationships and supports emotional well-being.

• Practical methods for validation include making eye contact, actively listening, and consensual physical touch.

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June 14, 2022

June 14, 2022

how to have more self-compassion
how to have more self-compassion
how to have more self-compassion

• Many people suffer from a lack of self-compassion, influenced by negative feedback during childhood.
• Self-criticism and shame are often reinforced by negative societal and cultural norms.
• Mindfulness and daily practice can help shift from self-criticism to self-compassion.

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Self-criticism is often a response to feeling threatened, with the brain activating fight or flight, as if facing real danger.

Self-compassion can deactivate stress responses, fostering calm and a more self-love.

• Exercises in self-compassion include rephrasing internal dialogue and practicing kindness and understanding toward oneself.

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April 15, 2024

April 15, 2024

by Tina Marie Del Rosario

by Tina Marie Del Rosario

healing collective therapy logo news blog
healing collective therapy logo news blog
healing collective therapy logo news blog

• A woman-owned business with a diverse range of clinicians

• Our culture is built on empathy, expertise, and inclusivity

• Our practice works with everyone from celebrities and Fortune 500 CEOs to students and people just finding their way in the world

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